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Potentially the 10th planet in the solar system, scientists confirm that Xena is larger than Pluto

Astronomers recently declared that Xena, the object known as 2003 UB313, is bigger than Pluto -- over 400 miles in diameter larger.  Xena was originally discovered by Mike Brown, a professor of planetary science at the California Institute of Technology, but no one has been able to confirm his original speculation that the object is bigger than Pluto until just recently. Due to the object's irregular orbit, ocassionally Xena's orbit is three times as far from the sun than that of Pluto.

The International Astronomical Union is still in heated debate on whether or not Xena is even a planet.  The group's definition, which is currently being re-evaluated, could leave us with either eight planets (omitting Pluto), or expand it to 10 planets.

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By mlittl3 on 2/3/2006 5:21:14 PM , Rating: 2
Actually, IIRC, the discoverer of the planet was a Xena the warrior princess fan and actually named the planet after the character on the show. It is not coincidence or some roman god, it is actually Lucy Lawless's character.

If you look at the wikipedia entry for it, some astronomers found a moon orbiting Xena and named it Gabrielle.

Now how do you like that.

By Griswold on 2/4/2006 6:29:25 PM , Rating: 2

The X of Xena stands for Planet X; they had wanted more female names for astronomical bodies, and this was the closest they could come to a mythological female name beginning with X.

More like practicable than fandom. Plus, Xena is, according to your wiki link, just a nickname and not the real name they proposed to the IAU. The official provisional name is still 2003 UB313.

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